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synaptogenesis in retinal cells

The Cord Connects

Neurons from the retina of a rat form new branching sites and potential new connections with their neighbors (shown in yellow) under the influence of three large proteins isolated from cells of the human umbilical cord. These thrombospondin proteins come from the umbilical cells themselves, not cord blood. The lab of Cagla Eroglu in cell biology and neurobiology believes the molecules may have potential for treating degenerative eye diseases. Image credit: Sehwon Koh. "Human Umbilical Tissue-Derived Cells (hUTC) Promote Synapse Formation and Neurite Outgrowth via Thrombospondin Family Proteins," Journal of Neuroscience. DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.1364-15.2015